Lewis Hamilton takes Milestone Victory at the United States Grand Prix
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News October 23, 2016 Updated: 11:43 PM
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton took his 50th career victory at the United States Grand Prix. With this win he joins F1 Legends Alain Prost (51) and Michael Schumacher (91) on the prestigious All Time Wins list.
“I’m delighted to claim my 50th career victory today, it’s been a long time coming, but most importantly it was great to have a solid race weekend. This race has always gone extremely well for me, but still, it was a massive relief when I crossed the line given my reliability issues in recent rounds.
I was 100% clear on my start and I knew it was going to turn out that way. It was a nice feeling, especially after so many ups and downs, and I was able to control the race from there. It’s been great to be back here in Austin and the response from the fans has been incredible. The aim is to continue this form next week and I can’t wait to continue the Championship battle in Mexico,” said Hamilton.
Nico Rosberg still has a strong chance of winning the title simply by finishing second in the remaining races. All Hamilton can do is hope Rosberg runs into trouble or fails to score any points.
“It would have been awesome here in America but it didn’t work out. Lewis did a great job this weekend, all the way through, qualifying and race so it just wasn’t to be. I’ll live with second place now and next race is another great opportunity,” said Rosberg.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo had to settle for third after passing Rosberg on the opening lap at Turn 1, but he lost that position to Rosberg’s longer strategy. Also, his teammate Max Verstappen's gearbox failure mid way thru the race brought out the Virtual Safety Car and allowed Rosberg to make his stop while Ricciardo was held up. Rosberg then exited the pits ahead of Ricciardo.
“I think we were looking good for P2 but then the Virtual Safety Car didn’t work in our favour today. I’m not going to be too disappointed, it’s just cool to be on the podium here. I love coming here, the anthem was pretty awesome before the race, I had goosebumps, I’m not gonna lie, and then the podium after was great. It’s another big bag of points and we at least had Nico’s pace so that’s encouraging and we’ll try and do what we can in the next few days,” said Ricciardo.
Ferrai’s Sebastian Vettel took fourth place after an unsuccessful tire strategy forced him to stop with two laps left in the race. His teammate Kimi Raikkonen was forced to retire after leaving the pits with a wheel gun still attached to his car.
Fernando Alonso did a little cattle rustling with some impressive overtakes on Felipe Massa and Carlos Sainz to finish fifth after starting ninth for McLaren-Honda.
Felipe Massa finished seventh behind Sainz with Force India’s Sergio Perez finishing eighth after recovering from a spin on the first lap. The second McLaren of Jenson Button took ninth place ahead of Haas F1’s Romain Grosjean, who brought home a point for the team’s American debut.
“It didn’t go too badly today. It was a bit of a messy first lap, but I managed to get through everything. Then we went with an aggressive strategy trying to go for it. That worked out pretty well, so I’m happy with that. We were lucky that a few cars retired in front of us but, in the end, we needed to finish the race. It’s great to score a point in front of our home crowd,” said Grosjean.
Three races remain in the season with Mexico as the next stop on the F1 calendar.